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20121129
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cliff, 34 days left for congress to make a deal, which will prevent taxes from rising on everyone. including the middle class. and all day, americans around the country were sending a message, telling washington to get to work and get a job done. here's abc's senior white house correspondent jake tapper with the story. >> reporter: president obama today continued his public relations push, surrounding himself with supporters who wrote the white house, saying they do not want to see a tax increase on the middle class. it's all part of a move to rachet up pressure on republicans in congress to reach a deal before the nation goes off the so-called fiscal cliff, which would increase taxes for the average family by $2,200. >> that means less money for buying groceries, less money for filling prescriptions, less money for buying diapers. it means a tougher choice between paying the rent and paying tuition. >> reporter: but house republicans will not relent on their opposition to any plan that would raise taxes on the wealthy. >> you're not going to grow the economy if you raise tax rate
, but some economists estimate that because of the uncertainty posed by the fiscal cliff, at least 200,000 fewer jobs have been created this year. and, diane, the official deadline for the fiscal cliff is december 31st at midnight when the ball drops in times square, but there's actually another deadline. the house of representatives is scheduled to go on winter break a week from friday, so really there are only 11 days to work out a plan as of now, diane. >> talk about the clock ticking down. thanks so much, jake. >>> and, of course, the president also spoke out today about the lethal stockpile of chemical weapons in the hands of the brutal regime in syria. chemicals so deadly, one drop can kill within minutes. abc's senior foreign affairs correspondent martha raddatz on these weapons and whether it means the u.s. may be forced to take action. >> reporter: the latest intelligence is alarming. officials telling abc news the u.s. is now seeing specific signs that the syrian regime may be preparing to use the chemical sarin against opposition forces. sarin is an extremely toxic substance
insistence that key to the u.s. beginning to pay down its debt and avoid going over the fiscal cliff is raising tax rates on the wealthiest americans. >> we're going to have to see the rates on the top 2% go up, and we're not going to be able to get a deal without it. >> reporter: if republicans agree to do that, the president told bloomberg television, he'll agree to serious spending cuts. republicans have offered to raise taxes on higher incomes by $800 billion, not by raising tax rates, but by eliminating some deductions and loopholes. during last year's budget showdown, the president said he wanted to do exactly that. >> what we said was give us $1.2 trillion in additional revenues, which could be accomplished without hiking tax rates, but could simply be accomplished by eliminating loopholes, eliminating some deductions and engaging in a tax reform process that could have lowered rates generally while broadening the base. >> reporter: but now the president does not. he says it will not raise enough revenue. >> it's not me being stubborn. it's not me being partisan. it's just a m
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